Martha Zoller is the editor in chief of ZPolitics and co-host of Zoller and Bryant's Georgia's Morning News. You can contact her at email@example.com
Warren Lee Hill: The Death Penalty and Georgia
Tonight, Warren Lee Hill is scheduled to be executed in Georgia. The usual groups are claiming he shouldn’t be executed because of his mental capabilities.
Let’s take a look at what Warren Lee Hill did. He was convicted to spend life in prison for the murder of his girlfriend in 1986. In 1990, while in prison, he decided to craft a weapon out of wood and nails and bludgeon another inmate to death while he was sleeping. For that crime, he was given the death penalty. It took time and planning to carry out the murder in prison. It was premeditated.
Let’s look at again with the names of the victims:
Hill was sentenced to die for the 1990 beating death of fellow inmate Joseph Handspike. His lawyers are asking the U.S. Supreme Court to halt the execution because of what they argue is new evidence in the case.
Hill bludgeoned Handspike with a nail-studded board while his victim slept, authorities said. At the time, Hill was already serving a life sentence for the 1986 slaying of his girlfriend, Myra Wright, who was shot 11 times.
Years ago, I was interviewing Dick Morris on the day the Supreme Court ruled executing a mentally retarded person could be construed as cruel and unusual punishment. Morris turned to me and said, “This decision is the end of the death penalty in America, everyone will be mentally disabled.”
Warren Lee Hill is a murderer. He killed his girlfriend and then he planned and executed the murder of another inmate in prison.
His execution should be carried out as scheduled. It is time the victims in these cases get justice.
The problem with the death penalty is not it is cruel and unusual to the perpetrator. It is a problem because it is cruel and unusual for the victims and their families and friends.
We need restructuring of the death penalty system. There should be a 5 year limit from sentencing to execution. It should be the responsibility of the State to test any DNA evidence, especially if it’s exculpatory. Upon conviction, there should be an automatic appeal for technicalities, because everyone knows in death penalty convictions the lawyers are incompetent–or that is always the claim. Then there should be an appeal on evidence. This should be completed in 5 years time. If you have to remind people of the crime, justice for the victims is not being done.
I will pray for the families of Myra Wright, Joseph Handspike and Warren Lee Hill, but justice should be done and the death penalty on Warren Lee Hill should be carried out as scheduled tonight.
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